How do I prepare perennial plants for winter

General    Pennsylvania, USA

I was wondering what the best method is for protecting plants like perennial herbs over winter. In particular, I have a rue shrub which is starting to drop its leaves as it prepares for winter. It is currently growing in soil protected by rocks, will the rocks provide adequate protection to the crown or should I use an organic mulch? What kind of things can I do to ensure it survives the winter weather, or is it best simply left alone? Should I prune back the twigs or just leave be? Thanks

Posted by: Lindsay McMenemy (167 points) Lindsay McMenemy
Posted: October 29, 2013


I wouldn't prune, since your roots need to soak in as much of sap and energy from the rest of the plant as possible. Rocks are good for holding some heat. Having them along the walls is even better, so you're ahead of the game there. If I were in your climate, I'd probably throw some loose straw over the crowns and keep my fingers crossed. I've had tropical plants come back from the roots under straw or mulch... in Tennessee!

Posted by: David Goodman (67 points) David Goodman
Posted: October 30, 2013

Lindsay McMenemy commented,
Thank David, great info
over 5 years ago.

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